Server Hardware

Somewhere to keep track of possible hardware for the planned new UK server, see UkServerProcess and UkCrypto for more info.

The proposal below was worked up on the basic of hosting at Calyx and it would cost around \xA36000 at the moment this amount of money hasn't been yet raised see the UkDatabaseServerBreakdown page.

Also now the immediate plan is to set up a server with the Seattle Community Colocation Project and for this are power consumption is the main issue and this box is being considered on the UkRiseupServer page.

One Dual Opteron Postgres, Tomcat and NFS box

Postgres and tomcat need a load of CPU and RAM for the UK site to be quick so a dual Opteron with as much RAM as we can afford would be good, ideally in a 1U case and also with hardware RAID. This box could also be a NFS server for the front facing C3 machines.

If it has 5 ethernet connections then one can be used for the external ssh connection (no other external services would be needed) and one each for the C3 boxes using cross over cables, this would save on having a switch.


Maulkin has quoted for around \xA34,000 for a machine like this:

CHASSIS: 2U / CD&FDD / Rails / Dual 460W PSU
CPU: Dual Opteron DP244
RAM: 8Gb [8 x 1Gb]
HDD: 3 x 250Gb SATA [Hitachi]
EXTRAS:  3Ware RAID 9500s-4 ~ 1-Years Telephone RAID Support

Payment on account: 4273GBP
Payment on account before 31/12/2005: 3993GBP
Payment with order: 4071GBP
Payment with order before 31/12/2005: 3804GBP

Single 460W PSU:
Payment on account: 3960GBP
Payment on account before 31/12/2005: 3700GBP
Payment with order: 3773GBP
Payment with order before 31/12/2005: 3526GBP

These prices exclude VAT and delivery (cause I don't know where it's
going yet :)

This quote has expired and also it might need more ethernet outlets adding - at least 5 are needed.


This is a more-or-less same spec as from Maulkin apart from the RAID card is not as good and it only has a single power supply but it's in a 1U case and it has a 4 disk hot swap backplane, it's from DNUK.

Dual AMD Opteron with Serial ATA/150 RAID 1U 19" Rackmount Chassis:

  • GS100 rackmount kit
  • 2 x Opteron 242 1.6Ghz 1Mb cache
  • 8 x 1Gb PC3200 RAM
  • 3Ware 4 channel 8506-LP4 RAID card
  • Hard Disk Drive Backplane - 4x serial ATA/150 hot swap backplanes
  • 3 x 250Gb SATA HDs
  • Ethernet: 2x (dual) Broadcom BCM5704C 1000/100/10 Mbit/sec network adapters. 1x Intel 100/10 Mbit/sec network adapter.

The above comes to \xA33,491.88 +VAT which is \xA34,102.96 (inc VAT).

However it would probably make sense to get 4 x hard disks, and this would be: \xA33,612.03 +VAT which is \xA34,244.14 (inc VAT).

Of course it would be nice to have faster processors (2 x 2.2Ghz processors) and more RAM (16 x 1Gb modules) and more disk space (4 x 400Gb HDs) however there is no way we will be able to afford over 10 grand for this server!

Two Dual Motherboard C3 Boxs for Apache, FTP and rsync

The VIA C3 processor is also cheap, not good for postgress and tomcat perhaps but it could be ideal for a couple of dedicated apache web server just doing https, a dedicated rsync machine and a dedicated ftp/webdav upload server.

For more info see the VIA C3 processor site and also some independant VIA PadLock ACE benchmarks .

The 1.2Ghz C3 Processor with the Nehemiah C5P Core (the fastest chip they do) seems to come on motherboards that don't have I/O shields for 1U cases, so the following is based on the 1Ghz chips. The PD1000 motherboards have dual ethernet build in, one can be used to link to the postgres / tomcat server and one fot the external interface.

Maulkin has expressed concern about heat build up from having two motherboards in a 1U server, however the C3 processors run very cool, they are not like Intel or AMD processors!

Two servers can fit in one 1U box, following is an example of what one of these boxes would cost:

The following is based on the prices at

The above comes to \xA3713.70 +VAT which is \xA3838.60 (inc VAT) each and \xA31677.20 for two.

The following is based on the prices at

The above comes to \xA3815.50 +VAT which is \xA3958.22 (inc VAT) and \xA31916.43 for two.

Hard disks

Topic revision: r8 - 25 Dec 2005, WietsE
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